The Great Moose Hunt

mhunt6

I was trying to write a blog post yesterday when I received a text informing me that I had to run an errand upriver. sigh Fine.

After the errand was complete I was directed to drive towards Fredericton. Huh? Supposedly I was taking a faster route back to St. Stephen (the logic escaped me but OK). It turned out I was really being taken into the back country with the stated objective of finding a moose.

mhunt2

Now I’ve already mentioned in these pages that I expect to meet a Sasquatch before I ever encounter the mythical being known as the Moose. They don’t exist. I’ve been here for more than 2 years and the closest I’ve come to seeing one is some drawings on road signs and stuffed toys. Still I’m willing to try so we headed out into the “wilderness”.

The roads got narrower and less paved. I know, you’re thinking a road is either paved or not. But there are degrees. It started as dirt roads, then mud, then crushed rock, then big rocks, and finally big rocks hidden under 20 inches of dark water. It’s a good thing I bought an AWD vehicle.

mhunt3

We spent a good deal of time driving alongside the gas pipeline – yes there is one of those out here. The countryside around us was landscaped by the Irving Woodlands Division.

I haven’t talked about Irving before …. primarily because I don’t know where to start. Living in this Province is like living in a company town. The list of things they own touches EVERYTHING. Recently they purchased the company which runs the salmon farms – they are inescapable.

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Clear-cutting the hardwood forests, spraying them to eliminate the growth they don’t want, and then planting softwood is their preferred management strategy. You can tell where they have sprayed – there are no birds. People are warned not to eat deer liver – all those toxins build up you see.

They also dump a lot of the cut hardwood (those of us heating with wood could use that timber) and burn much of it. pity

mhunt5

We spent many hours looking for the impossible. Every now and then I was told there were moose prints next to the road – “Proof they exist!”. I said “Right, just like crop circles prove there are aliens”.

Never saw something resembling the tall tales I’ve heard. I did see a family of wild turkeys. Mom/dad/9 fairly advanced children. The father stayed out of this shot but he was big. Not as big as they claim their imaginary moose friends are of course. 🙂

mhunt1

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